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West Indies squeaks through

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West Indies scraped into next year’s ICC World Cup in England, as heavy rain coupled with a controversial umpire’s decision helped them beat Scotland by five runs under the Duckworth-Lewis system in the final of the Super Six march of the ICC World Cup Qualifiers on Wednesday at the Harare Sports Club in Zimbabwe.

Faced with winning their final must-win match, West Indies were bundled out for a paltry 198 off their 50 overs.

Opener Evin Lewis top-scored with 66 and veteran Marlon Samuel struck but the regional team collapsed after being 123 for 2 and lost their last eight wickets for 75 runs. Hard-hitting opener Chris Gayle failed with the bat again and was out for a first ball duck.

New-ball opener Sayyaan Sharif (3-27) and Brad Wheal, both claimed three wickets apiece to wreck the Windies innings.

In reply, Scotland at one time were reeling at 25 for 3 in the seventh over before recovering as Richie Berrington who struck 55 and George Munsey (32) gave West Indies a scare as the game was still open when the rain came with Scotland on 125 for 5 in the 36th over, five runs below the DLS score of 130.

The controversial umpire decision was against Berrington who was given out LBW when it appeared that the ball was sliding down leg-side. The bowler was off-spinner Ashley Nurse.

Updated 3:05 am, July 10, 2018
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Reader feedback

Robert from Jamaica says:
This is typical of the new narrative on West Indies cricket – a narrative of failure, even when they win. To say the West Indies “squeaked” through and “scraped” their way to world cup qualification ignores that: (1) West Indies won its first four matches in a row winning as many as any for the tournament; (2) qualified for the second round first well before any other team did; (3) was favourite to be one of two teams to qualify; (4) made it to the final first; (5) lost two matches but to the same team and so only lost to one side; (6) won a rain affected game in which the opposition, Scotland, batting last failed to catch up with the Duckworth-Lewis target because of solid West Indian bowling, fielding and captaincy and bad Scottish batting; (7) lost twice to Afghanistan because of the superior bowling of the Afghans, who were good enough to be the other qualifier and to win the qualifications tournament.

Remember that the West Indies team was not the best due to poor board-player relations causing a number of players to be unavailable. The board are the real failures. What we must do between now and 2019 is get the best players in the side.
Note also that West Indies "A" completed a 3-0 whitewash over England Lions in the unofficial Tests.
March 28, 2018, 6:51 pm

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